Two Spanish Standouts

Spain continues to soar in the wine world. The country now claims to be the largest wine producer in the world, and the styles and quality of wines from Spain continue to grow. Modern viticulture and winemaking techniques are changing sleepy small ancient regions into modern superstars.

Two producers I recently tasted show the uniqueness, quality and value of Spanish wine. Txomin Etxaniz is a producer I return to time and again, never to be disappointed. Gotim Bru by Castell del Remei is a red wine that at delivers huge taste at an under $15 price. Both of these wines come from two of Spain’s smallest regions and show modern viticulture at its best.

Txomin Etxaniz is from the smallest DO in Spain, Getariako Txakolina. This tiny region in Spain’s Basque region on the northern Atlantic coast plants the indigenous vines Hondarrabi Zuri (white) and Handarrabi Beltza (red).

Txomin Etxaniz has been making wines since 1649. Their vineyards are on chalky terraced soils that overlook the Atlantic. The winery creates white and rosé wines that are light, yet full of character. Txomin Etxaniz white is a perfect seafood wine – which dominates the cuisine of the area. It is crisp and minerally, but with definite notes of citrus – lemon and a hint lime – as well as green apple and grassy notes.

Txomin Etxaniz rosé is bright and packed with light red fruit flavor – cherry, raspberry and plum. It too has the chalky crisp mineral notes. The wine rivals some of the best rosés of the Rhone valley and Provence and offers the taste of summer in a glass.

Gotim Bru is a wine my brother introduced me too as one of the best value wines he has ever tasted. This wine comes from the DO Costers del Segre in Catalonia. The producer dates to 1780 and was started by Bordeaux families who introduced Cabernet Sauvignon to the region.

Gotim Bru is a blend of Tempranillo, Garnacha, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The sunlight and granite soils of the region mark the wine with a dense fruit quality - fresh and dried cherry, strawberry and current notes. Carefully utilized French and American oak add flavors of chocolate, toffee and smoke to the wine. Gotim Bru just can’t be beat for its layered quality, and Spanish elegance.